Objectives: The aims of this study were to determine the effect of conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) supplementation on inflammatory factors and matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) enzymes in rectal cancer patients undergoing chemoradiothetrapy.
Method and material: In this randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled pilot study, 34 volunteer patients with rectal cancer undergoing chemoradiotherapy assigned into the CLA group (n = 16), receiving 3 g CLA/d, and placebo group (n = 18) receiving placebo capsules (sunflower oil) for 6 weeks. The supplementation began 1 week before starting RT (loading period) and continued every day during treatment. Before and after intervention, serum tumor necrosis factor α (TNF-α), interleukin 1β (IL-1β), IL-6, MMP-2, MMP-9, and high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hsCRP) were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) kits and immunoturbidimetric method, respectively. Independent t tests and paired t tests were used to compare parameters between and within groups, respectively.
Results: In the CLA group, the mean serum TNF-α, IL-1β, hsCRP, MMP-9, and MMP-2 levels reduced insignificantly. However, significant changes in TNF-α (P = 0.04), hsCRP (P = 0.03), and MMP-9 (P = 0.04) concentrations were observed in the CLA group when compared with the placebo group. The mean serum IL-6 level remained unchanged in the CLA group but increased remarkably in the placebo group.
Conclusion: According to our results, CLA supplementation improved inflammatory factors, MMP-2, and MMP-9 as biomarkers of angiogenesis and tumor invasion. It seems that CLA may provide new complementary treatment by reducing tumor invasion and resistance to cancer treatment in patients with rectal cancer.
Keywords: chemoradiotherapy; conjugated linoleic acid supplementation; inflammatory factors; matrix metalloproteinase enzymes1; rectal cancer.